The latest episode of Star Trek: Discovery, “The Wolf Inside,” was full of all sorts of goodies, so let’s dive right in!
We open with an intense and introspective monologue from Burnham. She’s obviously struggling with her new role as Captain aboard the I.S.S. Shenzhou. While she’s playing her role with ease and successfully attains the information about the U.S.S. Defiance, the darkness of the Terran Empire takes a toll on her. It’s also unclear how she’s going to get the files to the crew on U.S.S. Discovery.
To make matters worse, Burnham receives an order from the Emperor: destroy the rebel base and leader (The Firewolf) on planet Harlak. After stopping her First Officer from firing on the rebels immediately, she seeks guidance from Lorca. His recommendation is to do as the Emperor has commanded, but Burnham suggests that his constant torture may be clouding his judgement. She feels strongly that this Federation-like group of rebels with their Klingon leader can serve an important role in ending the war back home. They ultimately agree that she and Tyler should beam down to the planet, meet with The Firewolf, and attempt to save them.
At first, things go according to plan. The pair make it to the planet, are attacked by the rebels, but quickly surrender and are taken to speak with The Firewolf. The Klingon leader is revealed to be this dimension’s version of Voq.
He mistrusts Burnham’s claims to have “changed” and doesn’t believe she’s there to help, so he calls in a physic – who turns out to be the Vulcan Sarek.
While Sarek doesn’t quite understand the glimpses of Burnham’s past, he confirms for Voq that she is sincere and can be trusted. The rebels agree to be gone within the hour and provide her with encrypted data about their other bases – all of which they plan to abandon right away.
Everything seems to be going well, until Burnham begins asking questions about how Voq, a Klingon, can unite so many races together and still remain true to his nature. His responses function as a trigger for Tyler, who becomes enraged and attacks Voq.
He’s incapacitated quickly, but the outburst almost ruins their already shaky alliance. With Sarek’s encouragement, Voq spares Tyler’s life and proceeds with the plan to evaluate.
Back on the I.S.S. Shenzhou, Burnham hands over the encrypted data and demands to speak with Tyler in her quarters. The confrontation doesn’t go well. What’s left of Tyler seems to unravel before her very eyes and he finally admits that he isn’t himself. She doesn’t believe him until Voq takes complete control and mentions their previous fight on the Sarcophogus ship.
Burnham, clearly disturbed, quickly loses the upper hand and Tyler/Voq is moments away from suffocating her. Luckily, this dimension’s Saru (a slave whom Burnham “named” earlier in the episode) intervenes just in time. Tyler is arrested and taken to the teleport room for execution. Burnham follows shortly after and ultimately tackles the task of beaming him into space…after planting the U.S.S. Defiant files on his person so that the U.S.S. Discovery crew could retrieve both Tyler and the ever-so-important data moments later.
Everything seems hunky-dory, but Burnham and Lorca’s discussion about returning to the U.S.S. Discovery is interrupted when another ship fires on the rebel base on Harlak – before they had time to fully evacuate. Who would do such a thing? A none-too-pleased Emperor, who is actually an Empress. Not only is Burnham berated for her inability to follow orders, but she also realizes the deplorable Terran Empire is ruled by this dimension’s evil version of her beloved mentor, Phillipa Georgiou.
Further, this realization is accompanied by an odd response from Lorca, who appears to actually smile!
Meanwhile on the U.S.S. Discovery, Stamets is founds cradling Doctor Culber in a damaged part of the ship. Without any clear indication otherwise, it’s assumed by most, including Saru, that he is the one who committed the crime.
Tilly, however, has a different theory. She’s certain Stamets isn’t responsible because his brain has literally changed. She also hypothesizes that medicine isn’t the answer to his recover; the spores are and, as such, she’s the most qualified person on the ship to treat him.
Saru agrees to let her attempt to revive Stamets using the spore drive and, when things go well at first, even commends her abilities. The process, however, is too much for Stamets’ heart. Despite Tilly’s pleas, Saru has a medical team interrupt the procedure but they are unable to stabilize him.
A later scene shows Tilly lamenting the loss of her superior, teacher, and friend. Stamets is still in the spore drive chamber and to Tilly’s delight, he moves. Moments later, the monitors in the room start beeping and it’s clear Stamets isn’t bowing out just yet. In fact, we actually get a brief glimpse inside his brain before the episode ends. Among the beautiful spore madness in his head, Stamets meets another Stamets, who has apparently been waiting for him to arrive.
And there you have it, folks! Tune in Sunday for the next episode and be sure to comment below with any additional insights.